Michal Handzuš

Michal Handzuš (Slovak pronunciation: [ˈmixal ˈɦandzuʃ]; born 11 March 1977) is a Slovak former professional ice hockey centre. Handzuš played for hometown club, HC ’05 Banská Bystrica of the Slovak Extraliga before joining the National Hockey League (NHL) in 1998. Handzuš played for the St. Louis Blues, Phoenix Coyotes, Philadelphia Flyers, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks and the Chicago Blackhawks, with whom he won the Stanley Cup with in 2013.

Handzuš represented Slovakia at several international ice hockey tournaments, including the 2002, 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympics.

Playing career

Handzuš played in the 1991 Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament with a youth team from Poprad, Slovakia.

Handzuš, nicknamed "Zeus," was drafted 101st overall in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft by the St. Louis Blues, playing with them for two-and-a-half seasons from 1998–99 to 2000–01. The Blues' line of Pavol Demitra, Ľuboš Bartečko and Handzuš were known as the "Slovak Pack" line. Handzuš finished second in voting for the Frank J. Selke Trophy, awarded annually to the NHL's top defensive-forward, following the 1999–2000 season.

Handzuš was traded on 13 March 2001, along with Ladislav Nagy, Jeff Taffe and two first-round draft picks, to the Phoenix Coyotes in exchange for Keith Tkachuk. Handzuš then spent two seasons with Phoenix.

On 12 June 2002, Handzuš was traded along with Robert Esche to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for Brian Boucher and a third-round draft pick. On 5 December 2002, he became only the second player in NHL history to score a penalty shot goal in overtime. In the 2003–04 season, he finished second on the Flyers with 58 points and later signed a three-year contract extension with Philadelphia during the ensuing off-season. During the 2004–05 NHL lockout, he played for the HKm Zvolen, which reached the playoff finals in the Slovak Extraliga.

On 4 August 2006, Handzuš was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Kyle Calder. Only eight games into his season with Chicago, however, Handzuš suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which sidelined him for the remainder of the 2006–07 season.

On 2 July 2007, Handzuš signed a four-year, $16 million contract with the Los Angeles Kings.

On 1 July 2011, Handzuš signed a two-year, $5 million contract with the San Jose Sharks. During the lockout-shortened 2012–13 season, on 1 April 2013, Handzuš was traded back to Chicago in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick.

On 24 June 2013, Handzuš and the Blackhawks defeated the Boston Bruins 3–2 in Game 6 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals to win the Stanley Cup. In the following off-season, on 5 July, Handzuš re-signed to a one-year contract to remain with the team. On 19 March 2014, he played in his 1,000th career NHL game.

On 28 May 2014, with the Blackhawks facing elimination in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals, Handzuš scored a game-winning goal in double-overtime against Los Angeles Kings, the eventual Stanley Cup champions. On 16 June, after the Blackhawks had been eliminated from playoff contention, the team announced that they would not be re-signing Handzuš after the season. He subsequently became an unrestricted free agent on 1 July.

Career statistics

Regular season and playoffs

  Regular season Playoffs
1993–94ŠK Iskra Banská BystricaSVK U2040233659
1994–95ŠK Iskra Banská BystricaSVK.22215142910
1995–96Iskra Zlatý Bažant Banská BystricaSVK U20667134
1995–96Iskra Zlatý Bažant Banská BystricaSVK193148
1996–97HC ŠKP PS PopradSVK4415183324
1997–98Worcester IceCatsAHL69273663541126810
1998–99St. Louis BluesNHL664121630110228
1999–00St. Louis BluesNHL812528534470336
1999–2000St. Louis BluesNHL3610142412
2000–01Phoenix CoyotesNHL1044821
2001–02Phoenix CoyotesNHL791530453450002
2002–03Philadelphia FlyersNHL8223214446132686
2003–04Philadelphia FlyersNHL822038588218551010
2004–05HKm ZvolenSVK3314243834
2005–06Philadelphia FlyersNHL731133443860222
2006–07Chicago BlackhawksNHL83586
2007–08Los Angeles KingsNHL827142145
2008–09Los Angeles KingsNHL8218244232
2009–10Los Angeles KingsNHL812022423863254
2010–11Los Angeles KingsNHL821218302061120
2011–12San Jose SharksNHL67717241820000
2012–13HC ’05 Banská BystricaSVK159101922
2012–13San Jose SharksNHL2811212
2012–13Chicago BlackhawksNHL1115642338116
2013–14Chicago BlackhawksNHL594121616192138
2014–15HC ’05 Banská BystricaSVK2271118161839122
2015–16HC ’05 Banská BystricaSVK40121628361516712
2016–17HC ’05 Banská BystricaSVK10156271546104
SVK totals18361851461676413314424
NHL totals100918529848349811616304652


YearTeamEvent GPGAPtsPIM
1995SlovakiaEJC B55384
Junior totals17710178
Senior totals5111243522

Awards and achievements

This is the list of achievements of Michal Handzuš:

See also

External links

Uses material from the Wikipedia article Michal Handzuš, released under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.